If you have not had a lot of face-to-face contact with your boyfriend or girlfriend lately, you have probably been keeping the flame alive via your phone.

It’s much easier to do this now than when your parents were young. If they wanted to keep in touch, they had to ring the one phone in the hallway of the other home and pass the filter of their partner’s mom or dad. Nowadays, you just shout at your phone, and it dials for you, with no filters at all: no one telling you to put the phone down and no one listening to your conversation. You can snuggle under the covers and chat away all night in total privacy. 

At least that is what you might think. While it is unlikely that you have the FBI or KGB listening to your calls, if you are using the internet, there is no true privacy anymore.

Text messages, photos or video calls can all get you into trouble, so be careful what you send. Countless people have found texts, pictures or videos they sent to someone they trusted being shared with others or even posted onto the internet. Even if you trust the other person, it’s always possible that someone else picks up their phone. 

Be careful what you receive, too. If your boyfriend or girlfriend is a minor and sends you nude pictures, you could end up being charged with child pornography, even if you are the same age. Even if someone else sends you a naked image of their boyfriend or girlfriend, you could find yourself under investigation.

If you find yourself in trouble over images on your phone, seek legal help from an attorney who understands the laws around sexting. What may have seemed harmless and private, could turn out to be damaging and public.